I understand that Christ’s suffering through his atonement paid the price for our sins thus allowing them to be forgiven. But how does Christ’s atonement provide for our afflictions and weaknesses? I have accepted Christ’s atonement for my life, and have felt a genuine forgiveness for my sins. But I still have my weaknesses, and they still continue to afflict me. So how therein am I benefited?
I have known kind, Christ-like persons with big hearts, and among the greatest challenges they face is figuring out how to help someone in need. They don’t just want a stop-gap measure; they don’t want to do something just so they feel better; they want to truly help. Your Advocate is also kind, with a big heart. And He has found a solution to this challenge.
Jesus Christ took upon Himself your “infirmities, that His bowels may be filled with mercy, … that He may know according to the flesh how to succor [you] according to [your] infirmities” (Alma 7:12). He knows what you truly need and how to provide it.
As an example of an affliction or infirmity, a friend of mine battled through cancer. She later shared with me that the best counsel she received during that time (by someone with the same experience) was that through her suffering she would get to know her Savior. Her friend knew what to say because of their common experience – just as your Savior knows how to give you relief because He has shared in your infirmity. What’s more, she used this opportunity to draw closer to God and sought for answers from Him, which is the truest light and knowledge we can receive.
The Book of Mormon also teaches that God “give[s] unto men weakness that they may be humble; … then will [God] make weak things become strong unto them” (Ether 12:27).There are sometimes cases when a person needs to be reminded of his dependence on God.
My dream calling in the Church is Sunday School teacher. It doesn’t matter what class, I just want to share what I’ve learned. I’ve spent most of my years of service in administrative callings. I’m capable of meeting expectations set for these callings, but they just don’t thrill me in the same way. If I were an arrogant man (or at least more arrogant than I am), I would think my wards were wasting my potential. I see instead, that the Lord gives me these callings so that I will turn to Him for guidance and assistance. I know management is not my particular passion, so I yoke myself to Christ and He makes me capable. If I had it my way I would rely on my own wisdom and knowledge, focusing more on the teaching than the learning. The Lord gives me callings so I will come unto Him. He then reminds me of my particular weakness (forgetting who’s classroom it is), so that when He does (occasionally) call me to teach, He can make weak things (lessons) become (spiritually) strong.
As you have personally sought for forgiveness, applying the Atonement in your life, you learned more about your Savior and His expectations and love for you. I encourage you to do the same with your afflictions and weakness. As you personally seek for succor, applying the Atonement in your life, you will learn even more about your Deliverer and His expectations and love for you.